2017 Winter Workshop

Session 1

Cheryl Lindeman – Education
Fuzzy 5 or Spot On?

After implementing a simple collection of hand gestures, Cheryl has been able to cultivate productive group “chatter” in her classes. With the goal of gaining useful feedback about how well students have understood new concepts, ideas, assignments, instructions, etc., Cheryl implemented the “Fuzzy 5,” and as a result has been able to adjust her lessons by adding more explanation, asking for student input, or creating scenarios using familiar imagery. In this presentation, Cheryl will share how she implemented this technique and discuss learning outcomes.

  • Handout
Jo Anne Miller – Equine Studies
Creating a Cohesive Classroom

In Jo Anne’s Introduction to Equine Assisted Therapies class, it is important for the class to function as a cohesive group, where everyone feels  they can contribute.  In this presentation, Jo Anne will share some of the “5 minute” games (Raccoon Games, Balloon Games, the human knot, etc.) she uses to cultivate an effective classroom atmosphere. These games have led to great classroom discussions, and have inspired her students to choose to work together (even those who would not normally do so).

Kaija Mortensen – Philosophy
Scaffolding Writing Assignments

How can we use informal reading response assignments to help students develop specific writing skills that they will need to apply in writing formal papers for our courses?  In this presentation, Kaija will demonstrate how she uses sections of Graff and Birkenstein’s book They Say, I Say: The Moves That Matter in Academic Writing to help her students deepen their engagement with course texts, practice writing skills, and prepare to write better papers in her Introduction to Philosophy course (PHIL 132).

Kacey Meaker – Physics
Use of “Hard Problems” and Order of Magnitude Thinking to Help Students Get Started with Solving Problems

I just don’t know how to get started.” Like many mathematics and physical sciences professors, Kacey hears this from students at least once a day.  In Kacey’s Topics in Theoretical Physics (PHYS 371) class, she dealt with this problem by implementing ungraded, biweekly problem solving classes. The students were presented with difficult, open-ended problems and had to work together to solve them. In her presentation, Kacey will briefly present her technique, give some examples of problems, go through a quick (non-mathematical) problem-solving example, and discuss how this can be applied in a variety of class settings.

Lunch Intermission 12:30 – 1:30

Session 2

J. Jackson-Beckham – Communication Studies
Gamify your Syllabi

Gamification is not simply “turning things into a game.”  Rather, gamification is the application of game mechanics and game design techniques to engage and motivate people to achieve their goals.  In this presentation J. will  discuss how she has successfully used “gamified” moments in her classes and how these successes have inspired to design and teach entirely gamified version of Communication Technology & Culture (COMM 204) in Spring 2017.

Blair Gross – Psychology
Backwards Course Design: A Method for Crafting Better Assessments

Backwards course design (Wiggins & McTighe, 2005) is a method of crafting or redesigning a course where, rather than starting with content and then designing assessments, you begin with the desired learning outcomes and work backwards to develop effective assessments. This is particularly useful when emphasizing skills you want to impart to your students.  In this presentation, Blair will provide an overview of the backward course design process and discuss how it has improved teaching and learning in her courses.

Dennis Goff
Do Online Videos Improve Performance in Statistics?

Dennis developed a series of online videos that are designed to augment classroom and textbook presentations. He hoped that the videos would improve student success (completion) and use of Microsoft Excel among students in his applied statistical analysis class. In his presentation, Dennis will describe the creation and implementation of implementation of the videos and compare outcomes from the video-enabled Fall 2016 semester and the Fall 2015 semester.